Trading My Bike for Shoes The Next Few Days

For the next several days I am off the bike due to surgery today. I am not supposed to pull or exert effort on my left arm while the stitches heal. The reason for the surgery was to remove Squamous Cell Cancer from a spot on my inner left forearm. Since bikers ride outside in the sun (most of the time anyway) we are exposed to ultraviolet rays and other stuff that can increase the likelihood of skin cancer. Up to this point I did not think I was having a problem but a visit to my dermatologist in December resulted in a biopsy which showed the skin cancer. I would recommend that every biker get a checkup for skin cancer.

I don’t want to bore you with too many details but I have learned a few things about skin cancer:

  • Squamous Cell Cancer is the second most common one
  • there is a  Skin Cancer Foundation
  • Mohs Micrographic Surgery

So today after two rounds of Mohs surgery I have a 2 inch long incision with a bunch of stitches. I decided to walk about 3 miles to replace the bike ride I was planning in the great weather we were having: 74 degrees, partly cloudy sky and a light breeze. In my last ride report I said I hoped to ride more in January 2012 than January 2011 but this will slow me down for few days.

For the record below is a picture of my bandaged forearm.

Bandaged arm

6 comments

  1. Nolan Kuehn says:

    I’ll echo your recommendation for bikers to regularly get a skin exam. About 5 years ago, I had two biopsies that were malignant: One, a squamous cell carcinoma on my neck, and the second one a melanoma on my cheek. My dermatologist used the Mohs technique to remove the melanoma. I wound up with a “Y”- shaped suture stretching from my ear to my chin. Luckily, the doc was an artist; today, I can’t even see any evidence of the suture.
    The amazing thing is that all I saw on my face was a slightly darkened area, with an ill-defined border. How lucky I was in catching it in time!
    Bikers, get that exam!!!

  2. The doctor commented that it was unusual to get this on the inside of my forearm away from the sun. He said it was good I pointed it out to the physician assistant.

  3. This has made a dent in my January riding but as you said praise God the cancer has been found and I am recovering. If it will warm up some I can get back to biking.

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